25th Annual Conference on Literacy: Dare to be a Wild Reader and Writer

April 14, 2018, Mount Saint Mary College Campus
Presented by the Collaborative for Equity in Literacy Learning (CELL) at Mount Saint Mary College

Keynote Speaker
Pat Mora is an author, poet, literacy advocate, and founder of Bookjoy. Among her books for young children are Yum! ¡Mmm! ¡Qué Rico! America’s SproutingsTomás and the Library Lady, and A Library for Juana. For young adults she has written Dizzy in Your Eyes and, for teachers, Zing! Seven Creativity Practices for Educators and Students. Bookjoy aims to invite young people into the joy of literacy and learning. Her many awards include the Américas, the Tomás Rivera, Pura Belpré, and the Golden Kite.

Several books by Pat Mora are available for purchase prior to the conference. Place your book orders online today!

Conference Schedule

8:30-9 am Registration, Hudson Hall
Continental Breakfast
9-10 am Keynote Presentation
Pat Mora
10-10:20 am Break and Book Sale
10:20-11:35 am Workshop Session I
11:35-11:45 am Break and Book Sale
11:45-1 pm Workshop Session II
1:15-2:15 pm Lunch with Pat Mora

Conference Registration

Register online today!
Registration fee (on or before April 7): $40
Late registration (after April 7): $50
Full-time student: $20
Reading council members: $30
Lunch with Pat Mora catered by Talavera: $10

Session 1 Workshops

Living Like an Essayist: The Journey is Everything
Rebecca Quackenbush
Whole generations of adults fear writing because they grew up thinking writing means sentence diagrams, penmanship, spelling, and proper placement of that darn thesis statement. Our students deserve better. They need essays to help them think in reflective, open-minded ways, to stir their emotions, teach them about life, and move them to want to change the world. Now more than ever, young people need practice finding subjects of interest and passion to write about.

3 Ways to Prevent Reading Difficulties in Primary Grades
MaryAnn Reilly
To become a wild reader and writer, one needs to love reading and be proficient at it. In this session participants will learn three critical ways to prevent reading difficulties from happening so that all children can embrace reading. This session is designed specifically for K-2 educators.

Visual Literacy: Help Your Striving Reader Find Success!
Jessica Turner
The participants in this session will learn about the philosophy behind visual literacy as an instructional strategy, how it can be used to support students who consistently struggle with comprehension of text, and how it works to help the reluctant student become an avid reader and writer. Participants will engage in the process of visual literacy, learn about the various elements of a typical lesson, and how to implement this strategy with students.

Unleashing Middle and High School Readers: Creating Mental Representations of Poetry through Art
Jane Gangi
In this session, participants will encounter challenging poems that may be difficult to comprehend. Rendering their imaginations through a series of “art”—even stick art—will enable participants to better comprehend text. What participants learn about comprehension and visualization in this session can transfer to other genres and disciplines.

Wild Wild Weather Family Night: Integrating Literacy and Science
Ludmila Smirnova, Sonya Abbye Taylor, Rachel Collymore, Joseph Ryan, Meghan Atwood
The Sigma Tau chapter of Kappa Delta Pi will share their Wild Wild Weather Literacy Alive! program to show how, through the integration of literacy and science, they were able to promote a love for reading and writing through engaging stations. This integration provided an opportunity for an authentic literacy and scientific inquiry experience and allowed children to build vocabulary and deepen their understanding of scientific concepts while making them wild readers and writers.

Creating a Reading Community
Meredith Inkeles and Mary Bish
Explore ways to immerse students into being a part of a classroom or school-wide reading community without prizes. Participants will leave with ideas that we have implemented in our school to foster a love of reading- some subtle and some blatantly obvious.

Making It Real: Authentic Literacy
Kathryn Roberts
In school, we often ask kids to practice the skills of reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and creating through activities that only exist within school walls, not beyond them in the real world. However, engaging in activities that matter in their real lives is motivating for readers and writers. In this session, participants will have the opportunity to learn about and explore authentic literacy learning for students of all ages.

Session 2 Workshops

Re-Thinking Homework: Connecting with Families to Help Young Readers and Writers Flourish
Christine Otero
What does the research say about homework? How can homework help students develop the skills that they need to become avid readers and writers? Together we will look at the research and participate in some activities that can be used in the classroom or at home. My goal is for everyone to leave with practical ideas that can be implemented right away in the classroom as well as at home.

Alison Roper
Students in our classrooms enter from so many backgrounds and experiences. It is important for teachers to tap into those backgrounds and for students to share who they are and what makes up their background. Participants will engage in activities focused around themselves. From sharing getting to know you games, to great read-alouds, graphic organizers, and making All About Me Books, teachers will reach all students and allow them to be wild about themselves.

Unrolling the Book: Using Scrolls to Teach Comprehension
Dave Middlebrook
Dare to be wild! Use scrolls in your classroom! Scrolls are better than books for teaching course content, for engaging struggling and gifted students alike (and together), for engaging minds and sparking conversation, for fostering strategic thinking, for growing readers who comprehend and writers whose work is coherent. Scrolls are simple, low-cost, and surprisingly effective. Today we’ll focus on comprehension. Come see what happens when the book is unrolled!

WILD ABOUT WORDS! Phonics, Word Study, and Spelling in a K-2 Classroom
Linda Hatfield
Dig deep into words! Engage in hands on experiences that will allow you to reflect on your current practices. Participants will learn how to apply strong characteristics of phonics instruction that will enable children to learn about and efficiently use sounds, letters, and words. Participants will understand how to present a short mini lesson and plan for children to apply the lesson through instructional approaches such as shared reading, interactive read alouds, and writing.

Wild Writers are Motivated Writers
Sonya Abbye Taylor, Marie-Therese C. Sulit, and Nancy Benfer
What motivates students to be Wild about Writing? What instructional methods ensure students will develop the skills they need while they become wild about the language, word usage, and proud to be skilled writers? Presenters will provide an overview of the research on motivation and will describe research projects that have identified several factors that inspire students to be wild about writing and to write like writers.

Students Creating TED Talks: Nurturing Student Curiosity within a Project-Based Learning Environment
Matthew Freedman and David Gallagher
One of the challenges of project-based learning is ensuring students meet the goals of a project, while also allowing flexibility for student direction and autonomy.  Using the example of teaching high school students how to create and present their own TED talk, the presenters will share the evolution of the project process that has been used to nurture student curiosity and promote a sense of ownership that transcends traditional learning outcomes.

No! They Are Not Too Old For Nursery Rhymes!
Antonia Uszenski
Participants will engage in activities that demonstrate how nursery rhymes enhance brain development, as well as literacy skills in the Pre-K – 2nd grade classroom setting. I will share a variety of kinesthetic activities that foster and support all learners!

Register online today!

Questions? Email rebecca.norman@msmc.edu